Ensuring that car parts reach their destination on time involves a complex chain of events that begins at BMW’s Wackersdorf logistics centre in Germany. BMW’s operations manager Josef Huf explains: “We need to guarantee that the empty containers are removed from trains and replaced with full containers – every day we need to move around 80 containers to specific deadlines.” A missed train can add up to EUR 80,000 to the transportation cost.
Three Kalmar reachstackers and a terminal tractor equipped with a container mover transport components around the logistics centre. The reachstacker can quickly load and unload containers from waiting trains, ensuring that the trains reach Hamburg in time for shipping. The terminal tractor can load containers onto trucks without the need for additional lifting equipment, and is small enough to manoeuvre inside the warehouse.
According to BMW, the reliability of the Kalmar equipment, backed up by outstanding technical and service support, could not have been better. If the process were to be interrupted, the whole chain would break down and nothing would move. “In two years of working with Kalmar, we have lost no time due to these machines,” says Huf.